License for electronic cigarettes and soft drinks business

License for electronic cigarettes and soft drinks business
Posted date: 29/07/2023

Legal situation: I want to operate an electronic cigarette and cafe business in a small location. What licenses do I need and where can I obtain them? I would appreciate the assistance of a lawyer in addressing this matter. Thank you.




Thank you for trusting and submitting your consulting request to the FDVN Law Firm ("FDVN"). Regarding your inquiry, after researching the legal regulations, we have the following information to exchange:


Based on the information you provided, we understand that you want to operate an electronic cigarette and cafe business as a retail establishment. If you choose to operate as a retail business, in compliance with the legal regulations, you need to follow the following steps:


Step 1: Register your business to become a trader


You can choose to register a company, business households, or register as an individual engaged in independent commercial activities on a regular basis. FDVN recommends that you proceed with the establishment of a sole proprietorship due to its simplicity in terms of establishment, tax management, invoices, documents, etc.


The procedures for registering a sole proprietorship are as follows:



  • The application form for household business registration;
  • Legal documents of the owner of the household business or family household members applying for household business registration;
  • The copy of the minutes of meeting of family household members on establishment of household business in case the household business is established by family household members;
  • The copy of the letter of authorization made by the family household members to authorize a person to act as the owner of the household business in case the household business is established by family household members.


Processing time: within 3 working days from the date of receiving a valid application.


Authority handling: District-level business registration office (Business registration office at the district-level People's Committee).


Step 2: Apply for a retail license for tobacco products


Currently, Vietnamese law does not differentiate between electronic cigarettes and traditional cigarettes. Therefore, the business of electronic cigarettes is regulated under the tobacco law.


Conditions for obtaining a retail license for tobacco products:


Based on Article 3, Article 26 of Decree No. 67/2013/ND-CP as amended and supplemented by Decree No. 106/2017/ND-CP and Decree No. 08/2018/ND-CP, the conditions for obtaining a retail license for tobacco products include:

  • The applicant must be a tobacco trader that is duly established under the laws of Vietnam
  • Tobacco stores shall not violate regulations on locations that sale of tobacco is banned in accordance with the provision of Clause 2 Article 25 of the 2012 Law on Prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effects
  • There is a letter of introduction which is made by the tobacco distributor or the tobacco wholesaler and specifies the intended business location;



  • The written request for the issuance of the License for tobacco retailing
  • A copy of the Certificate of Enterprise registration or Certificate of Business registration and the Certificate of Tax code;
  • Copies of letters of introduction which are made by tobacco distributors or tobacco wholesalers and specify the intended business location;


Authority: Chamber of Industry and Trade or Department of Economy (a specialized agency under the People's Committee of a district, town or provincial city.)


Order and procedures for apply for license: Business households make 02 sets of dossiers, 01 set is submitted to the above handling agency, 01 set is kept.


Time limit for settlement: Within 15 working days after receiving complete and valid dossiers.


The above is the advisory opinion of FDVN regarding your consulting request based on the research of legal regulations. We hope that FDVN's advice will be helpful to you.


By Hoang Thuy Quynh - FDVN Law Firm.



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